Alleged Longtime Salamme Jr. Confidant Seeks Hail Mary Pass

One of  Frank Salemme's co-defendants in the 1993 murder of a former nightclub owner claims he's irrelevant to this particular case and therefore should be left out of it.

Frank Salemme'
Cadillac Frank all cleaned up and looking sharp.

His lawyers are making what seems like a bizarre argument. They in effect say that, despite the many, many incriminating allegations linking Weadick to Cosa Nostra activity (including a homicide), he should get a pass on this one since nothing directly ties him to the 1993 murder.

In a court filing, his lawyers, William Crowe and Mark Shea, note that nothing in the evidence against Weadick "has any relevance whatsoever to the charged crime."

Allegations about Weadick are limited to only the following: his general association with Salemme; a previous arrest for alleged involvement in 1987 drug ripoff; the fact that throughout the 1990s Weadick was generally known to be armed; his reputed involvement in drug dealing and collecting tribute from loansharks and bookmakers; and allegations that he was involved in the murder of Michael Romano, Jr.

He allegedly was killed by mistake, the shooters were gunning for Enrico Ponzo.

Enrico Ponzo, Boston mob associate.
Enrico Ponzo, Boston mob associate.

But he wasn't involved in the Robert Disarro murder.

Prosecutors note in their filing that Frank Salemme Jr., picked up Weadick from prison in 1989.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Fred Wyshak said that the defendant’s acts detail his long association with the Salemmes and the Mafia.

“Contrary to the Defendant’s claim, the Government does not seek to introduce the proffered evidence to show he has a propensity to engage in criminal activity,” prosecutors wrote.

“The evidence demonstrates that the Defendant and Francis P. Salemme, Jr. enjoyed a long-standing relationship. The evidence helps to explain why the Salemmes would rely on the Defendant to assist in the murder and remain silent about it. The evidence demonstrates a solid preexisting association.”

Salemme and Weadick are expected to go on trial later this month for the 1993 strangulation death of Steven DiSarro whose body was only discovered in 2016 behind a Providence mill.

Enrico Ponzo participated in a failed hit that was part of a New England Mafia war, then fled Massachusetts in 1994, with law enforcement in hot pursuit. Following years on the run, Ponzo settled in a small Idaho town -- and for the next 10 years, he successfully posed as a rancher named Jay Shaw.

The FBI and US Marshals arrested him in Idaho in 2011 and extradited him to Massachusetts. Two years later, following a trial in which he faced attempted murder and other charges, Ponzo was convicted and sentenced to 28 years in prison.

Last October the family of Michael Romano Jr. filed a $60 million lawsuit against the Fed's claims of wrongful death and gross negligence by FBI agents that led to his 1994 murder.

They alleged that Massachusetts mobsters working as FBI informants fatally shot the wrong target.

Romano was shot on Sept. 1, 1994, noted the lawsuit filed by Romano's former wife and his two children.

He was mistaken for Enrico Ponzo, the intended target of the shooting, the family from says.

At the time, the FBI was using Mark Rossetti, a reputed Mafia leader, and Stephen (The Rifleman) Flemmi, a former Winter Hill Gang member and ex-partner of James "Whitey" Bulger, as informants, the family claims.

Both Rossetti and Flemmi were associates of Cadillac Frank, the former mob boss for New England La Cosa Nostra, according to the suit.